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An Ode to Kullu Valley

Updated on June 2, 2009

Double Abecedarian- for all you poetry buffs!

This is a bit of a confounding poem to read.  It is a double abecedarian, which means: 

It is composed of twenty-six lines.  If you look at the first letter of every line, you will see that they go from A to Z in descending order.  If you look at the last letter of every word, you will see that they go from Z to A, zipping the whole thing back up.  Rhyme is difficult in these things, meter can be almost impossible.  I don’t usually try.  But this time, I metered it loosely and rhymed it occasionally.

Good luck ;)

Away from the heat, away from the dust, listening to Moroccan music and jazz   
Biryani and lassis and rich chicken curry   
Colorful books on tantric sex   
Descend into heaven, high in the mountains, the Himalayan peaks all dressed in snow
Emerald-colored saris, steep mountain passes, Israelis with dreadlocks who call home Tel Aviv
Fertile valleys, staring eyes, Indian dishes called Gobi Alu   
Ganga grows wild, in gardens, on hillsides, choking white clouds, fragrant, hot   
Himachal Pradesh is eagles and valleys, and Chinese-looking Indians with scarves on their heads   
Irascible drivers, and tooting horns, Nepali music, and chai served surrrr…   
Jains sip it like this, so piping hot, and so do the Hindus, and boys named Fariq
Kullu Valley is the Switzerland of India, lush green hills with mountains on top    
Liberation, moksha, rapturous nirvana- keep doing yoga, you might evolve too!   
Mercury rises, mercury falls, I sleep with four blankets and dream of the sun
No rhyme to this poem, or reason either, for lunch I eat momos, and toast with plum jam    
Ostentatious peacocks, slick black puppies, the one in the creek has a kink in his tail   
Past lives determine your fate and your caste- if you sinned before, now you live in a shack   
Queens of England once ruled this land, its culture and soul held in thrall by the Raj   
Ranas and Ranis, Brahmins and lowlifes, a Muslim man dies to make love to a houri
Secular living is met with raised eyebrows-  you are Muslim or Buddhist, your god Vishnu or Jah   
Tableaus of terraces, glinting in sunlight, yellow beaked swallows who call out in song   
Under the peaks of the dizzying mountains, a waterfall spills from a green-ridged bluff   
Vishnu and Shiva crown temples and hills, and Buddha sits cross-legged, his mind tranquil and free   
Wise is the Tibetan who dies every day, a diligent student of the Book of the Dead
X-rated books, x-rated plants, an x-rated coupling in a flapping bivouac   
Yaks run free, their milk makes cheese, creamy and melting atop your kebab   
Zealous travelers rent jeeps to Ladakh, I stare at the peaks and say, Goodnight India!!!


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